Skip To Content

    28 Part-Time Jobs And Side Hustles People ~Highly~ Recommend For College Students

    "My advice to college students is to find a job — any job — that you at least kind of enjoy and take it seriously. Work study is about studying how to work, so use that opportunity if you have it!"

    We recently asked the BuzzFeed Community to tell us their favorite part-time jobs or side hustles they had in college — and they gave their personal insight, experiences, and tips for college students looking to earn extra money.

    Here are the fascinating results:

    1. "I blogged for our campus student-life website. It was awesome because I didn't have to physically be anywhere for my job; I could do it on the train, on a ride home, or between classes as long as I got my work done. I was able to meet all sorts of people and always knew about interesting happenings around the university."

    "The perks were great. I got to cover lots of dope events around Toronto and even had a media pass to get into concerts and movie premieres for free. Definitely one of my best student jobs."

    stupid_sexy_flanders

    A person typing on their laptop

    2. "I was a nude model for art students. I used it as a way to work on recovering from my eating disorder. Whenever I looked at myself naked, all I could focus on was my hip dips, touching thighs, and any other 'flaws' my first couple sessions. Seeing myself through the eyes of these students helped me in so many ways."

    "And in case anybody was worried about creeps signing up for the class just to see naked 19-year-old girls; it was a non-auditable class that required a TON of prerequisites to get into."

    ashleyp459897ecc

    Students drawing in an art class

    3. "I worked as a standardized patient at my college’s school of medicine. Basically I let medical, nursing, pharmacy, and athletic training students practice on me, and all I had to do was memorize some symptoms and maybe a bit of patient history and regurgitate it for a few hours."

    "Sometimes, we’d just get to lie there while they practiced doing ultrasounds. Easiest money I ever made."

    123joshharman

    A patient waiting in a room

    4. "I spent two summers as a gravedigger for the local cemetery. It was great to work in the outdoors and there were lots of breaks (as we waited for funerals to end). It was mostly mowing and weeding, but we always looked forward to the funerals because we knew it would be an easy day."

    devseanschin

    A person's foot rests on a shovel

    5. "I work as a housekeeper for older people through a home care agency. Such jobs are always a gamble whether you get assigned to pleasant clients or not, but most of my clients so far are pretty easygoing. They don't expect perfection and are so grateful for whatever I do when they see I'm trying my best. A lot of them feel lonely and love having someone to talk to for a few hours."

    "In return, on top of a relatively good salary, I get some free life advice, inside knowledge about the history of whatever town I find myself in, and updates on the latest neighborhood gossip, of course."

    janniemac2000

    A healthcare worker with an older person

    6. "My college had a public radio station situated on campus, so I worked as an engineer for the morning show. Basically, I ran the board, read the weather and a recorded promo to be broadcast on-air, and took phone calls."

    "Best part, I could work on homework in between cues. It was so cool, if disconcerting, to hear myself on the radio, and I built up a whole host of hilarious call-in stories."

    cssc201

    A radio studio with a mic

    7. "I was a dog walker/sitter. I didn't live on campus, so staying at the dog's house was a nice paid vacay within my town. I got paid $30/night back in the '00s, $15/hour for dog walking. It covered my community college and nursing school tuition, and I could make it work around my school and grocery store gig."

    "Plus, DOGS! Who doesn't love a good dog roomie?"

    makethingsgood

    "I was a dog sitter/walker for a while, and it was great! You sometimes get very generous clients; I had a couple who bought me sparkling wine when I agreed to dog-sit over New Year's and always allowed me to have a friend over. And if you like dogs but can’t have them yet, this is a great way to develop your dog skills."

    "Best part was just being around the dogs, because when you’re having a bad day they can 10/10 turn it around! It’s just as good for you as it is for your bank account."

    rachelp4372b051d

    A happy dog

    8. "I worked online as an English conversation tutor, making roughly $10–$15 an hour depending on if the client tipped afterward. Easiest job I’ve ever had. I set my own hours, had no boss to answer to, and the tutoring just consisted of a 30-minute conversation."

    "There was no grammar instruction (that was handled by other tutors who focused on that area), and I had many interesting conversations with many interesting people across the globe. Made several international friends along the way."

    sxphix

    A person on a video call

    9. "Not sure how common this is, but my school’s disability office would pay people to take notes in classes that had students with disability accommodations. I got approved as a note taker after submitting some sample notes and would get paid for notes from eligible classes."

    "It wasn’t a ton of extra income, but it was pretty sweet to get paid to do something I was going to do anyway. It was also a nice incentive to consistently attend lectures and pay attention!"

    chaosofthesun

    A student taking notes

    10. "I’ve babysat all through college and this year. In my senior year, I’m a live-in nanny, which I only work part-time and don’t need to pay rent. BLESS."

    peytonbach2

    "During college in Paris, I worked as a part-time nanny. The French family was so kind and generous; they treated me as an equal and not a 'servant' (we're still friends 20 years later). They gave me a free studio apartment and paid me a small salary, plus paid all phone and electric bills. They were wealthy and had vacation homes in the country, the Alps, and Corsica, and paid for my trips there to care for the two children (3 and 5 years old at the time)."

    "I am now a nonprofit/fundraising and events consultant — but after all of these years of full-time work at both small and large organizations, honestly, that was the one job that treated me generously and with kindness."

    bronxfoodie

    A babysitter playing with a child

    11. "While studying photojournalism, I used to do wedding photography on the side. I loved it, even though it’s super intense. Good money, free cake, and everyone is so happy that you’re there."

    "I also worked as a supervisor for a small team of activists in a large human rights NGO and loved how they made a point out of actually showing us the results of our work. Very motivating."

    sophiepv

    A photographer takes a picture of a couple

    12. "I worked at my university's dining hall, which doesn't sound that glamorous, but they treated us so well. We would get free meals, a $200 bonus every term (three terms) we returned. Plus, we basically got to pick our hours and which area of the dining hall we wanted to work."

    "I got paid well above minimum wage and got a raise every year I returned. It was great pay for just serving food to college students."

    cquinnracing

    A restaurant cashier ready to take an order

    13. "I went to college in Williamsburg, Virginia, so I got a summer job working in one of the taverns in Colonial Williamsburg. It was a total hoot: I wore a full 18th-century costume (based on what they actually wore at the tavern back in the day), and all the servers were required to give each table a history lesson about the room they were sitting in at the tavern."

    "Easily the best job waiting tables I ever had."

    gwinevere

    A horse-drawn carriage heads down the street

    14. "I worked as a secret shopper while home on breaks from college. Basically, I was assigned a task to complete (browse a computer section at a store, get an oil change, eat at a restaurant, etc.) and different markers to watch for relating to customer service. Then, I’d fill out a questionnaire and be compensated for my time and be reimbursed for purchases of items I got to keep."

    "The pay wasn’t great, but getting free stuff and pretending to be a spy for a few minutes was thrilling!"

    mandalou

    A person shopping in a drugstore

    15. "I work as a gallery attendant at my school's art museum. Some of the perks include flexible hours, nice coworkers, easy duties, calming environment, and so much more. Plus, I get to stand by Picasso's work. I feel so lucky!"

    hiitsnicetomeetyou

    Two people looking at art in a museum

    16. "I worked at the bookstore on campus — my reasoning was that it was my single biggest expense after tuition and room and board, so why not get a discount for being an employee? In the end, I became really good friends with the manager, so he would let me borrow expensive books as long as I kept them in perfect condition — and if someone ordered that book, I needed to give it up, but it never happened. I also got to know everyone on campus, helped them find all their books, and helped them get the best buyback deals at the end of the semester, and would remember when people requested certain things and let them know when the items came back in stock."

    "I was also able to work over the summer, so I’d live on campus, take classes, and work on nights/weekends. At the end of my junior year, I ran for student government and won, and I think at least half of that success was because everyone knew me as 'the girl from the bookstore.' Seriously the most valuable job I could have had."

    sarahbel

    "I also worked at the on-campus bookstore, which at the time, was really the only place you could buy books at Baylor from 1985–89. I didn’t get to know a lot of people, but I did get a discount. Clothing was 40% discount, which tells you how much they marked it up. New textbooks were 20% off and used were 10%. Supplies were 20% off."

    "It’s been 33 years, and I still remember those discounts. Oh, and I lucked into a faculty-employee parking sticker for free!"

    blissbednar

    A person putting books on a shelf

    17. "I am a CA in college, which is the front desk person of a residential hall, and I absolutely love it. We don’t get paid much, $7.35 per hour, but we work three-hour shifts, and we choose which shifts we work. We can also do our homework or study during the shift."

    "Overall, it’s stress-free and relaxing, but a small source of income."

    Anessaa

    A person and their parent moving stuff into a dorm

    18. "I worked as a caregiver at an Alzheimer’s nursing home. I worked 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. for $5.15 an hour. Cooked meals, gave meds, changed clothes and diapers. That job was no joke! I didn’t hate it, but I was ready to go back to college at the end of that summer."

    jonathang4a5f67ce0

    A healthcare worker holding the hand of an older person

    19. "I worked the ticket booth for the local ice arena! A few times a week, I’d sit in my little heated booth and be the person that people paid to get into varsity hockey games, big figure skating competitions, etc. They let me read or do homework when it wasn’t busy, and I was welcome to shut down then go in and watch whatever was happening at the end of the second period if I wanted. They also ran the entrance booth over the summers at the town beach, so I’d be moved out there for June through September when I was off from school."

    "People paid me to get into the beach while I sat in an air-conditioned booth and read or watched movies on my laptop all summer. It was an amazing gig, and I genuinely miss my boss, who was one of the kindest people I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting."

    yogiwitch

    People cheering at a hockey game

    20. "I drove the beer cart on a golf course, and it was hands-down the best job ever. I just cruised around outside all day, listening to music, shooting the shit with a bunch of old geezers. Literally the only stress was running out of yellow Gatorade."

    mmbbttss

    A person driving a golf cart around the course

    21. "I work as a security guard. It's kind of nice because I get booked event-based, which means I work a lot of hours one week a month and earn a good amount while having the other weeks for studies. Also, it really taught me how to be a lot more independent and self-confident because I need to deal with a lot of people."

    "In fact, the agency I work for employs a lot of students, older people, and stay-at-home-parents like me who want to side hustle." 

    hallomarie

    A security guard

    22. "I was an elementary school literacy tutor with America Reads all throughout college! I got to work with children in Detroit and surrounding areas and watch them grow throughout the semester. During my senior year, I really just got to play with the kids instead of tutoring them because they needed connection and socialization post-COVID — and I got paid for that! Many US colleges and universities have their own chapters, so it's a well-known, well-respected program among employers postgrad."

    "Just being reliable, competent, and diligent gave me such an advantage in the position. My advice to college students is to find a job — any job — that you at least kind of enjoy and take it seriously. It turns out that common sense job skills are not all that common. Work study is about studying how to work, so use that opportunity if you have it!"

    ciwa00

    A older student helping a younger one with a science project

    23. "I worked at a ceramic studio off campus. It was super fun and relaxing because when the studio was slow, we got to make pieces for display. I ended up being promoted to the point where I would open/close and manage the kiln room. We led birthday parties, taught classes, and helped in the studio room with different art techniques."

    "Great way to decompress after classes and get paid while doing so!"

    vevasquez96

    A person in a ceramic studio

    24. "Best gig: A friend's college lecturer paid me a lot of money to translate the lyrics from a few Japanese film soundtracks. My fave was one I did called The Tribe (2014), which was entirely in Ukrainian Sign Language with no spoken dialogue and no onscreen subtitles. Even though it was a dark and depressing film and the payment was fairly crap, I had a lot of fun with it."

    "I mean, I was raised on British Sign Language (half of my family are deaf), but was familiar with Irish SL, French SL, Japanese SL, and ASL enough to recognize the basics of Ukrainian SL, so figuring out the rest is what made it so fun."

    superkay

    A person working on a computer

    25. "I worked at Under Armour (and still do), and it’s the best job I’ve had and will ever have! The managers are absolutely amazing and treat us with so much respect, acknowledge our work, and never make us feel stupid for asking a question. The entire team itself gets along so well! We all joke around with each other and there’s laughter everyday (including the managers)."

    "It makes work so much more fun, and it actually improves productivity. Love that place."

    lumpyflamingo

    An Under Armour store

    26. "I worked at Yogurt Jungle, which served not only frozen yogurt but also salads and sandwiches. It was a great job because it was a really popular place among the college students. It was all students working, so I got to meet a lot of people I wouldn’t have otherwise."

    "I did that until my junior year when I started working as a course counselor for the psychology department (my major). There, I basically helped students figure out the classes they needed in order to major in psych and helped with their scheduling conflicts."

    lunallee212

    "I worked at an ice cream shop during college. I loved it because nobody's in a bad mood at the shop. It was fun, I always smelled like vanilla, and I got free ice cream. The hours flew by because it felt more like a hobby than work. I absolutely loved it!"

    fearlessadvisor

    A yummy cup of frozen yogurt

    27. "I worked at the reception office at a home for older people nearby. I got familiar with a little bit of administration work. Since we didn’t have many visitors, which is a sad reality for people living there, I had plenty of time to study for my classes and exams."

    "My job was basically getting paid to study (and sometimes watch TikTok)."

    izzieactually

    A receptionist on the phone

    And finally...

    28. "I worked at KB Toys back when it was still in business. It was the best part-time job ever. My managers were super cool and so were the rest of the staff. We all got along well and would hang out outside of work, and we basically played with toys all throughout our shift."

    myjojo

    What was your favorite (or least favorite) side hustle or part-time job you had in college? Let us know in the comments below!

    Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.

    The National Eating Disorders Association helpline is 1-800-931-2237; for 24/7 crisis support, text “NEDA” to 741741.